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Property division in Illinois is one of the central actions couples facing divorce must navigate.
To help you learn more about marital property and its division in Illinois, Cooper Trachtenberg Law Group, LLC, family law experts, cover these and many other issues related to divorce.
Illinois is an equitable distribution state. Unlike community property states, where the property is divided equally (50-50) without exception, equitable distribution means the court has discretion in dividing marital property. It considers several factors in determining a reasonable and fair division in each case.
In short, marital property is property spouses acquire during the marriage. Only marital property is subject to division in Illinois, unlike separate property – which is defined as the property each spouse owned before the matrimony.
Under Illinois law (the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, Section 503), the non-marital property encompasses the following:
Furthermore, this section contains detailed rules about the treatment of commingled marital and non-marital property, which is one of the most contested issues between spouses, giving rise to family disputes.
As mentioned, inheritance is separate property if there was no commingling with marital property. In that case, the court considers the identity of the contributed property. That means that if the contributed property loses its specificity, it transmutes to the estate receiving the assets. On the other hand, if contributed property retains its identity, it remains the property of the contributing estate (separate property).
Section 502. of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act allows the spouses to agree on issues such as the disposition of property, alimony, allocation of parental responsibility, and child support. The agreement must be in writing, and its provisions related to property division are binding. However, if spouses disagree, the court has the final word.
No. In an equitable distribution state, there is no guarantee of equal (50-50) distribution of marital property, meaning that one spouse can receive more than half of the property if the court deems it fair and reasonable. The court considers each case, analyzing various factors that justify an unequal distribution. According to Part V of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, these factors include:
Family lawyers can make a significant difference. An experienced family lawyer can help parties divide property out of court using collaborative divorce. In case of litigation, the right family attorney will ensure marital and non-marital assets are listed transparently and accurately. With financial experts, appraisers, and other professionals, a knowledgeable family lawyer protects their client’s interests, ensuring they receive a fair and reasonable share of marital property.
In Illinois, mediation is mandatory regarding child custody and visitation issues. In other situations, including property division, the court reviews each case to determine which option is the best.
Litigation is known as a time-consuming and financially draining process. On the other hand, collaborative divorce provides spouses with the opportunity to resolve property-related disputes out of court. In a collaborative divorce, each party retains an attorney. They work shoulder-to-shoulder to enable the best possible outcomes. The key to collaborative divorce’s effectiveness is cooperation, transparency, and a non-adversarial approach to disputed matters.
At Cooper Trachtenberg Law Group, LLC, we go the extra mile to provide our clients with the best possible experience in property division disputes.
Working with other parties’ attorneys, we use our decades-long experience in collaborative divorce to achieve trust, transparency, and cooperation in each case.
In litigation, we can guarantee top-notch representation in court. With us, you can have peace of mind, no matter how complex your case is.
Call us today 847-995-8800 to schedule your appointment.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.